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Brivis Gas Heater Alert - Safety Recall Proceeding

Mediacom-Release-Brivis

MELBOURNE, Australia/ September 5, 2000/MediaNet International-AsiaNet-/--.The leading manufacturer of gas ducted heaters in Australia, Brivis Australia Pty Ltd, has advised customers of a potential problem with one of their superseded heater models which will require a precautionary Safety Recall Procedure.

The heater concerned is the EMS2 model, of which 11,700 were manufactured between 1994 and 1997 and are fitted in parts of Australia and New Zealand.

The Managing Director of Brivis, Mr Don Barber, said the company had discovered a fault in the circuit board of five of these heaters that may cause a malfunction leading to the brief free flow of gas to the unit without igniting it. The fault was found to have been caused by dry solder joint on one of the circuits on the board.

"As is common with many late model heaters, these units have an electronic pilot light rather than the original small naked flame pilot, but the fault we have discovered potentially allows the gas to flow when the thermostatic control is activated, but does not light it.

"Heaters installed in a confined space or LPG units have a higher potential safety risk as they could concentrate any gas being emitted in one location. Externally located units represent a lesser risk because the gas is more likely to dissipate naturally.

"We are therefore advising all Brivis owners to check their heaters to see if they have the EMS2 model number, and if so, to contact us. Advertisements in all major newspapers give details of how to check this. A Brivis telephone Hotline number 0800 946 384 has been established to assist if required, and also to record the details of the location of all such heaters. Alternatively, this may be done by visiting the Brivis web site www.brivis.com.au.

"Anyone who has an EMS2 heater installed in their ceiling or under the floor, or an LPG EMS2 heater, is advised not to use it until a new circuit board has been fitted free of charge by a Brivis technician."

Mr Barber said the company believed the element of risk caused by the faulty circuit board was very low as only five instances of the possible problem created by it had been detected to date, but the company felt it was in the best interests of its customers to replace the boards on all these heaters as a precautionary measure.

Mr Barber also stated that Brivis had been working closely with the Australian Gas Association and that they had been very supportive of the action taken by Brivis.

"I very much regret the inconvenience that will be caused for owners being unable to use their heaters. I can assure owners we are working flat out to obtain the necessary replacement parts and to get as many technicians as possible on the job to fit them," Mr Barber said, "and we are recruiting a number of additional staff to assist with the replacement program."

Mr Barber said that Brivis had the location details of a substantial majority of the heaters affected and that all these owners would be contacted to arrange a time for their circuit boards to be upgraded, but that the other owners would have to telephone the Hotline to register their details to enable an appointment to be made, or they could do this by visiting the company's web site.

Please note: a photograph identifying the model is available if required.

ENDS

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